NYC transit workers rally outside DA's office amid safety concernsPosted: Updated:
Transit workers took to the Bronx district attorney's office Friday to demand that people who assault city transit employees be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Denaul Jenkins knows firsthand the dangers his coworkers face on the job. He was stabbed several times in April while working at the East 149th Street subway station. His attacker, Walter Rivera, agreed to plead guilty to felony assault in exchange for his release on the condition that he stay out of trouble and get treatment for his terminal cancer.
Other transit workers told their stories while rallying for their safety and against the district attorney's office's decision to plea down Rivera's charges. Over the past several weeks, transit workers have held protests, rallies and a march across the Brooklyn Bridge demanding their unions put their safety first.
TWU Local 100, which represents more than 40,000 workers in the city's public transportation system, is applauding the recent announcement of an additional 500 police officers being placed within the city's subway and bus systems.
The Bronx DA's office tells News 12 in a statement, "The conductor, Mr. Jenkins, agreed, for Walter Rivera to take Assault 2 plea. He is very ill with leukemia. The defendant must go for mental health counseling and his cancer treatment. If defendant complies with these conditions for the next 18 to 24 months and does not get rearrested, he would receive a 3-year conditional discharge. If he fails to comply (gets rearrested) the judge stated he would sentence him to up to 7 years.
The case is on in mid-July for an update on compliance."